Throughout the semester, it’s easy to let your carefully thought out study plan fall to the back of your mind. Work, family and social priorities can take over, which means you could miss a couple of weeks of valuable study time.
If you’ve already read our blog post on kick-starting your study, you’ll know the best ways to get started – but how do you stay motivated throughout the whole semester?
Blended learning can be either a luxury or a burden, depending on how you’re used to studying. Although it gives you the freedom to fit your learning around a busy work and personal life, there are no lecturers following up with you on your progress, so it’s up to you to make sure you’re staying on track.
In order to succeed, you need to make decisions about your priorities, time and resources. Follow up on the priorities you set for yourself and don’t let others (or your favourite Netflix series) distract you from your goals.
2. Discover where and when you’re most productive
Morning, afternoon or evening? We’re all different, so find out what works best for you. It could be an hour before work, over your lunch break or in the evening after the kids are in bed. Discover the times and places you’re most productive, where you can really focus.
Your study space should be dedicated to your learning, so try not to get distracted by your emails or Facebook. You could listen to music if it helps you to study, but don’t let it be a distraction. If the weather is good, try studying outside for a change of pace.
3. Look for solutions to problems
If you really don’t understand a paragraph in your textbook, reading it over and over again probably isn't going to help. Try something different – consult with a colleague or contact our Member Services team if there's something you need help with. There is plenty of support available, so don’t be afraid to ask.
Call Member Services on 01 645 6670 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
4. Give yourself an incentive
Before you begin studying, take a few minutes to summarise a few objectives for the session, gather what you’ll need and think of a general ‘strategy of accomplishment’. One objective could be to read a chapter and write down 10 key points you’ve remembered afterwards.
Create an incentive for your accomplishments such as watching the next episode in your favourite series, eating a treat, going for a walk – whatever works for you.
Try alternating your reading with more active learning exercises. Ask yourself: how you could increase your activity level while studying? Perhaps a group study session would be useful for a change?
Create study questions too (tip: have a look at the learning outcomes in the module syllabus in your Learning Plan and craft your questions from there). Use the in-text learning supports in your textbook (e.g. self-assessment questions, just thinks, research exercises, reflections, websites etc.) to help with your active learning and revision of the material.
If you’re sitting exams with us, there are a wide range of online supports available in Connect and additional study skills advice to keep you motivated. Just log into the Member Area to access.